Malahide Yacht Club has unveiled its newly re-developed Dinghy Sailing Centre at the Broadmeadows to herald a new era in the Club’s dinghy racing and sail training activities, a move that coincides with a new membership drive.
Club members attending the Official Opening celebration on Sunday 11th March were addressed by the Mayor of Fingal, Cllr. Gerry McGuire, the President of the Irish Sailing Association Niamh McCutcheon and the Club’s 1980 Olympic Silver Medallist David Wilkins (who travelled from the UK specially for the occasion). Other speakers included Club Commodore Bob Sugrue and his predecessor Martin Clancy who spearheaded the development.
The distinctive split-level ultra-modern facility on the Sea Road, built at a cost of €450,000, features a general purpose area/classroom, changing rooms and showers on the ground floor, while on the new first-floor level, there is a large lounge/viewing area, a committee room and storage room.
The project, which took six months to complete, was funded by club savings, a bank loan and ongoing members’ fund-raising initiatives, and without any grants, lottery funding etc. Considerable savings on costs were achieved through a significant level of voluntary effort by many members who gave of their time and professional expertise to see the project through to completion.
The Club, founded in 1958, was at the forefront of dinghy sailing development in Ireland in the ‘60s and ‘70s, and has produced six Olympians (sailing in nine of the last 10 Olympic Games) and 28 national championship winners in its 54-year history. MYC’s David Burrows has qualified to compete in his fourth Games this summer in the Star Class while Scott Flanigan, crewing in the 470 Class, still has the opportunity to qualify.
Growing numbers of Laser, Optimist, Topaz and 420 Class dinghies in recent years underlined the need to replace the previous old and outdated structure at the Broadmeadows, widely acknowledged as one of the finest stretches of water in Ireland on which to learn to sail. The Club is actively seeking new members and now has the facilities which can attract both new and experienced sailors to the Broadmeadows.
According to Club Commodore Bob Sugrue, the new facility means the Club is now geared to run regional and national events on the Broadmeadows. “We have already been invited to host a number of events this season, starting with the 420 Class Leinster Championships on March 24/25, the Topaz National Championships in June and the Optimist Western Championships in September which is expected to attract over 100 entries”.
The Club is unusual in sailing terms in that it is the only sailing club with two separate clubhouses – one on the original site at St. James’s Terrace in the village and the other at Broadmeadows – and two separate sailing areas – the tidal Lower Estuary for keelboat racing and cruising and the non-tidal Upper Estuary for dinghies.